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SeaWorld Jumps on Oscar Snub for ‘Blackfish’ Whale Picture

SeaWorld Entertainment Inc. (SEAS) shares rose after “Blackfish,” a documentary critical of the theme-park operator’s treatment of killer whales, didn’t receive an Oscar nomination today.

Shares of the Orlando, Florida-based company, advancing for the sixth straight day, climbed 8.4 percent to $33.59 at the close in New York, the biggest gain since its first day of trading in April.

“Investors overwhelmingly expected ‘Blackfish’ to receive a nomination,” Timothy Conder, a Wells Fargo Securities analyst, said in a research note today. “Investors will now likely return to solely focusing on core fundamentals.”

Conder has an outperform rating on the shares.

SeaWorld, which sold shares to the public following a 2009 buyout by the Blackstone Group LP, said on Jan. 13 that it had record attendance at its SeaWorld-branded parks in Orlando, San Diego and San Antonio in the fourth quarter. The company also projected record revenue, of as much as $1.46 billion, for the full year.

“We have great issues with the film,” SeaWorld Chief Executive Officer Jim Atchison said in an interview yesterday on Bloomberg TV. “It’s an activist-driven agenda film. I have to say it hasn’t affected our performance.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Christopher Palmeri in Los Angeles at cpalmeri1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Palazzo at apalazzo@bloomberg.net

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